It might be time to get rid of your cordless phone….
I’m not completely paranoid about EMF. I still use a mobile phone. We have fixed wireless NBN.
But I did some measurements of EMF levels around our house and it was surprising how easy it is to reduce 95% of your EMF exposure with about 5% effort.
Take a look at this graph – it says it all…
The various devices that I measured around our home ranged from 8mV/m (that was my Apple LED display right in front of my head) to 10,000mV/m (that was our Uniden DECT cordless phone at my ear when on a call.)
If I were to get rid of the top three devices on this graph I would have reduced my EMF exposure significantly! If I replace my cordless phone with a corded phone and use my iPhone on handsfree and I don’t need to do a lot else. (I actually did a bit more since doing these tests. We have turned off our wifi completely and have our house wired up with Ethernet cable. I only turn in wifi when we have guests who need to use it.)
Don’t worry too much about the actual units (mV/m) because everyone measures EMF in a different way, I just want you to get a feel for rough proportions here.
We live out of town, and if I’m outside on the front lawn our background EMF is approximately 3mV/m.
If I go for a drive into town (we live in a city of population just under 40,000 people) the average background EMF in our city is about 150 mV/m. If I was living in the city I’d be trying to keep my home EMF levels below that, which is not too hard.
Three big ways to reduce your EMF
1. Get rid of your Cordless phone
Our regular Telstra phone ( not cordless) was under 300mV/m when on a call – I should have included it on the graph. This means that changing to a corded phone from a cordless phone will reduce your EMF while on the phone to about 1/30th!
2. Use earbuds for your iPhone.
Holding your iPhone on your ear gives you an EMF at your ear off approximately 10,000 mV/m. Using headphones, or using your iPhone in hands-free mode, reduces the EMF to approximately 50mV/m at your ear.
This reduces your EMF exposure by 200 times!
If you are using a Bluetooth headset thinking that it reduces the EMF at your head, think again! It might be 1/4 the EMF of having the phone on your ear, but it’s 50 times worse than using your iPhone with headphones.
3. Turn off your Wi-Fi at night
After our DECT cordless phone and mobile phone, the next biggest source of EMF was our Wi-Fi base station. We have an Apple airport express. Wi-Fi base stations are built to a certain standard so your average base station is going to be roughly a similar EMF regardless of the brand. This is the same for any device that you have Wi-Fi turned on for, for example a laptop with Wi-Fi, a computer with Wi-Fi, an iPad with wifi.
2 Principles of reducing EMF exposure
So there are two obvious ways to reduce your EMF from wifi:
#1 Make sure you are not close to it.
EMF reduces dramatically with distance. You can see this with the example of the iPhone. At your ear the EMF is 10,000mV/m but when the iPhone is about half a metre away, the EMF has dropped to 50mV/m.
If you are sitting right next to your laptop with Wi-Fi on for extended periods of time, or you are sitting right next to a base station, you will be getting much more EMF exposure than if you are a couple of meters away. Any distance helps, so even if you can get the Wi-Fi base station 1 foot further away by moving it to the other side of your desk, do it. This will be a significant change in EMF.
#2 Limit the time that your wireless devices are on.
The most obvious thing to do here is to turn off your Wi-Fi network when you are not using it. Think about it for how many hours in the day are you actually using your Wi-Fi network, yet you properly have it on 24 hours a day. If you just turn it on when you’re using it or even just turn it off at nighttime,you may well cut your EMF exposure by one third or one half. The simplest way to do this may be just to get a little cheap timer that turns your Wi-Fi network off each night.
I think the more we become aware of the effects of EMF on our house the more this will become an issue, but thankfully it’s relatively simple to reduce the effects of EMF with a little bit of knowledge.
My other piece of advice would be to borrow an EMF meter and wander around your house or office checking the levels. You might be surprised what you find.
If you are going to use an EMF meter, make sure you use one that is measuring the high frequency range, for example 50 MHz to 5 GHz.
Wifi uses 2.4Ghz and 5Ghz.
Mobile phones use 0.8Ghz – 1.8Ghz.
There are some low frequency EMF meters that are designed to measure 50 Hz (from power lines) and they will not pick up Wi-Fi EMF.